Mini circular saws can be a very useful tool for DIY enthusiasts, tradespeople and some homeowners. I'm Enda McLarnon, and I've been doing home improvement projects for years, from building bookshelves to laying laminate flooring and much more.

I've used a lot of saws over the years, from the simple hand saw to the full range of power saws. Today, I'm putting the Bosch UniversalCirc 12 Mini Circular Saw under the microscope. This little powerhouse is aimed at DIYers, hobbyists, and even professionals looking for a handy tool for smaller tasks. Let's take a closer look at this Bosch saw and see if it lives up to the right standards for your needs.

Product Overview - My First Impressions

Bosch UniversalCirc 12 Cordless Mini Circular Saw (1 Battery, 12 Volt System, in Box)

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Most small compact mini circular saws are electrical corded, but this one is cordless, and runs off a 12V battery supply, which is rechargeable. It's noticeably smaller and lighter than my regular standard size circular saw, making it feel instantly more nimble and maneuverable.

When you hold it in your hands the build quality feels solid. It has the typical hard plastic body that doesn't creak or flex under pressure. The ergonomic grip is comfortable, and the extra handle provides more control and stability during cuts.

This 12V saw has a decent cutting depth of 26mm (1"). That's perfect for tackling most DIY projects like trimming plywood, cutting timber for shelves, cutting laminate flooring and making flooring repairs. The 85mm (3.34") blade diameter is fairly standard for mini circular saws. This size blade is available in all good DIY stores in the UK.

The battery and charger used is compatible with the 12V Power for All lithium ion battery platform found across the Bosch DIY and Garden power tool ranges. (Just be aware this is the 12V range)

The saw comes with a parallel guide, which is really helpful for ensuring straight cuts, and a dust extraction port that you can connect to a vacuum for a cleaner work environment.

Compared to other mini circular saws on the market, the UniversalCirc 12 falls right in the middle in terms of size and weight. It's a bit smaller and lighter than bulkier models like the DeWalt DCS571N XR brushless compact circular saw, but slightly heavier than the ultra-compact Einhell Power X-Change 89mm cordless mini circular saw. Overall, it finds a nice sweet spot, offering a good balance of portability and power.

So far, at first glance, the Bosch UniversalCirc 12 impresses with its compact design, solid build, and handy features. But how does it perform in real-world situations? Let's have a closer look.

Key Specifications

Feature

Specification

Battery Voltage

12 Volts

Blade Diameter

85mm (5")

Blade bore size

15mm 

Cutting Depth

At 90°: 0-26mm and at 45°: 0-17mm

No load speed

1400 RPM

Actual Size

28.5 x 16 x 16.2 cm

Weight

1.4 kg

Guide plate

88 x 147mm

Handles

It has soft grip handles for a comfortable and secure hold.

Work Light

Uses LED lights which helps with the visibility of the line.

Adjustments

Fast and easy adjustment of the cutting depth and bevel angle.

Switch

Has a double sided lock off switch and spindle lock for blade changes.

Dust collection

Comes with an extraction adapter for connection to a vacuum.

Guide

Comes with a handy parallel cutting guide.

Who can make use of this compact saw?

Bosch UniversalCirc mini saw making a bevel cut

Potential Users

Applications

Description

DIY Enthusiasts

Anyone who enjoys tackling home improvement projects, from building furniture and shelves to laying laminate flooring and making quick repairs, will find the saw's compact size and power perfect for smaller tasks.

Hobbyists

Crafters, woodworkers, and other hobbyists who frequently work with wood and other materials will appreciate the saw's portability and precision for smaller projects like creating decorative pieces, cutting intricate shapes, or modifying existing items.

Professionals for Light Tasks

While not meant for heavy-duty construction work, professionals like electricians, plumbers, and installers can benefit from the saw's portability and ability to handle smaller tasks like cutting through wood for trim work, conduit, or paneling.

Anyone Seeking a Second Saw

Even if you already have a larger circular saw, the UniversalCirc 12 can be a handy complement for quick cuts, tight spaces, or situations where a smaller, more maneuverable tool is preferred.

My In-Depth Review on this Mini Saw

I don't own this saw, but a good friend of mine does and we put the Bosch UniversalCirc 12 through its paces on a variety of tasks.

Straight Cuts - This little saw is excellent when it comes to making clean, straight cuts. The parallel guide is very useful, ensuring accuracy even for long boards. The sight lines on the baseplate are helpful, but I found myself relying more on the guide for ultimate precision.

Bevel Cuts - I found that beveling wasn't quite as smooth as straight cuts. Adjusting the bevel angle requires a hex key, which feels a bit clunky compared to tool-less adjustments on some models. However, once set, the cuts themselves were decent, and the clear markings on the bevel scale helped maintain accuracy.

Plunge Cuts - This is where the saw's compact size really shines. Plunge cuts for sink cutouts or even quick repairs were a breeze thanks to the good visibility and control. The blade guard doesn't hinder your view, and the LED light illuminates the cut line even in low light.

My Ratings

Rating

Product Quality

Value for Money

Performance

Easy to Use

Reliability

Durability

Features

Cutting Power and Runtime - For its size, the UniversalCirc 12 packs a punch. I found that if cut through softwood and plywood with ease, even managing thicker hardwood planks without getting bogged down. However, don't expect it to handle heavy-duty construction tasks. Battery life was decent, lasting around 20-25 minutes of continuous cutting per 2.0Ah battery charge. This is enough for most DIY projects, but heavier tasks might require a spare battery handy.

Handling and Control - The saw feels surprisingly well-balanced and maneuverable. The ergonomic grip and additional handle provide excellent control, especially during plunge cuts and angled cuts. The saw is noticeably lighter than my regular circular saw, making it less tiring to use for extended periods. Noise level is typical for a circular saw, not overly loud but definitely noticeable without ear protection. Vibration is minimal, adding to the overall comfort of use.

Features - Blade changes are easy thanks to the spindle lock and easily accessible blade release button. Depth and angle adjustments are also tool-less and straightforward. The LED light is a thoughtful addition, especially for working in dimly lit areas. Safety features like the blade guard and trigger lock give you peace of mind while working.

Overall, the Bosch UniversalCirc 12 delivers impressive performance and ease of use for its compact size. It's a great choice for DIYers and hobbyists who need a reliable and versatile saw for tackling smaller projects. Its portability and user-friendly features make it a joy to use, while its cutting power is sufficient for most common materials.

Bosch UniversalCirc 12 Mini Circular Saw Comparison to Similar Small Circular Saws

I have included a comparison table just below. I have compared the Bosch to a more expensive Dewalt model and to a similar sized Einhell model. I have used average UK prices which were correct at the time of writing this review. Please not these prices refer to the "Tool Only." If you need batteries and chargers these come at an additional cost.

Feature

UniversalCirc 12

DeWalt DCS571N XR

Einhell 89mm

Image

Bosch UniversalCirc 12 Cordless Mini Circular Saw (1 Battery, 12 Volt System, in Box)
DEWALT DCS571N XR Brushless Compact Circular Saw 115mm 18V Bare Unit, Yellow
Einhell Power X-Change 89mm Cordless Mini Circular Saw - 18V Hand-Held Rotary Saw With 2 Blades For Cutting Wood and Plastic

Average Price

£85-£100

£175-£235

£99-£110

Battery (V)

12V

18V

18V

Blade Diameter

85mm (3.34")

115mm (4.5")

89mm (3.5")

Cutting depth

90°: 0 - 26 mm


45°: 0 - 17 mm

90°: 0 - 38 mm


45°: 0 - 25 mm

90°: 0 - 38 mm

No-Load Speed

1400 RPM

4500 RPM

2500 RPM

Weight

1.4 kg

2.5kg

1.77 kg

Comes with 

12V battery (2.0Ah), charger, saw blade for wood, suction adapter, parallel stop.

Saw only

92 dB (A)

The Bosch is fairly similar to the Einhell 4331100 model. Most of the specs are similar, but the Bosch can do bevel cuts and the Einhell can't do those. The Einhell has a slightly better cutting depth but it's a minor difference.

What other buyers say in the UK

Source

Review Summary

Rating

Amazon UK - Joe Tinkler

Was surprised with how clean it cuts, perhaps down to it being such a thin blade. I've been cutting 18mm ply and MDF and it's not had any problems

4.5/5 stars

Where to buy the Bosch Universalcirc 12V Cordless Circular Saw in the UK?

Please note these prices were correct at the time of doing this review (26th January 2024). Always check if you decide to buy as prices change all the time depending on the Retailer and any offers or deals they may be running. You will also find that different retailers may have different accessories bundled in.

If this isn't the right compact circular saw for you, the have a look at our top 10 list of compact saws here. With a battery and charger, this just isn't really an affordable option. However, that really depends on how much use you are going to get from the saw. This one will be handy to pull out for doing a whole variety of smaller jobs, when you don't want to pull out and setup the larger circular saw.

The fact that it's cordless, just means you can use it anywhere, so it's more portable. It's also a lot easier to move about than the bulkier bigger saws. For me anyway, I would prefer to use a cheaper corded option like the WORX WX 423, as it does the same job without the cordless freedom.

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